Tag Archives: patch panel

    • Eastwood Retail Outlet Hosts Patch Panel Training Class

      We've found that most car guys and gals are "hands on" learners. Sure you can read all the tech articles and watch all the Youtube videos in the world, but putting in the time practicing is where most of us really learn. We recently started holding small tech seminars where we let our customers learn from the professionals and get their hands dirty in the process.  Click Here To Read Full Post...
    • How to Make a Custom Running Board From Scratch- Project Pilehouse Edition

      In one of our last posts we gave you some sneak peaks of the custom running board project we've been working on for Project Pilehouse. During the process we documented the full build and shared some of our secrets to help you build a similar project yourself for cheap. After a some editing, we have the video chopped down and ready for your viewing. Check out the DIY video below and see some of our great Eastwood tools in action!

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    • Stretching the truck bed of PileHouse

      When we last mentioned how we were lengthening the bed of PileHouse we had just cut the bed apart and braced it to fabricate the new panels. This was not an easy task, but it was made much easier after the project had spawned some new prototype products.

      Many of our new product ideas here at Eastwood come from working on our own projects and chatting with customers about theirs. Once I split the bed on Project PileHouse I was at a bit of a loss on how exactly I was going to make the bed extensions to match the original embossing. Even though we have a professional grade metal brake in the shop, it still couldn't do the bends as close together as needed to create the shape we wanted, and making a buck to hand form the embossing would be extremely difficult and time consuming. This prompted R&D guru and product designer Mark R. to mock up a new vice-mounted (or bench mount) metal brake that has a removable fence that can allow you to make bends as close as 1/2" apart (exactly what I needed for the embossing on the bed sides!). Within a day's work with the Eastwood MIG 175, TIG 200, and a pile of fresh steel, Mark had a working prototype made from scratch and we were ready to test it out on the bedside patch panels.

      This and a new slip roll Mark designed helped make the bed stretch project go pretty smoothly and our replacement panels were dead matches to the existing bedsides. Check out the video as we go into full detail about the process and keep your eyes on Eastwood.com
      in late August when these new metal working tools hit our site!

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    • How to Replace A Rusty Lower Door Skin

      When looking over Project Pile House we started seeing a lot of spots where we needed to repair rusted panels on the body. When sizing it all up, we found that many of them could be replaced with the combination of some basic hand tools and our new Patch Panel Install Kit. We decided to show you an outline of how to tackle this job on an extremely rusty door. Enjoy the video, and let us know if you have any ideas for future technical how-to videos!

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    • The Top Tip to Make Seamless Sheet Metal Repairs

      Replacing door skins, quarter panels, and other patch panels can take a lot of practice to get perfect. We have found that there are a few little tips to make a seamless repair much easier. My favorite is the use of a "backing strip" to connect the new and old metal. Below is a crash course on how you can use some thin backing strips from our new Patch Panel Install Kit to make a seamless repair that will last the lifetime of the vehicle.

      First make your cut just above the damaged area. Be sure to clean the work area to bare metal and smooth out any sharp edges where the cut was made.

      Next, take a one inch backing strip out of the kit, and cut it to the length you need. Then use the supplied 3/16" drill bit to make evenly spaced holes in the original metal (do not drill holes in the backing strip).

      Now that the holes are drilled, take your backing strip and slide half of it under the original metal and clamp the two pieces together. We suggest using our Plug Welding Pliers. They have a copper support pad on them that helps reduce heat into the panel and helps avoid blow-through when making spot welds. The "V" in the top of the pliers makes it easy to pinpoint where you need to plug weld with the helmet down.

      Next you can plug weld the backing strip to the original metal. You may want to practice a few times on some scrap metal to get a nice flat spot weld. You should only be holding the trigger for a few seconds when making a spot weld. The result of setting up your MIG welder properly will yield results like below. Remember, the flatter the plug welds you make, the less final grinding and filler you need to do!

      Now that you have your backing strip in place, you can begin test fitting your replacement metal. Below you can see another reason why these backing strips are necessary in panel replacement; we can't always cut a perfectly straight line. Without a backing strip here, you'd have a tough time filling the gap without adding a small piece of metal. Trying to fill the void with weld would have caused major warpage in the metal.

      Once you have confirmed your replacement panel will fit correctly, you can drill plug weld holes with the 3/16" drill bit in the replacement metal. Refit the panel and plug weld it to the backing strip. Once the panel is attached, you can now slowly spot weld the seam between the new and old metal. Remember to jump around from end to end when spot welding. This will help keep the seam from warping and causing more work to get the repair area straight.

      Once you have the seam welded up, you can grind any "proud" welds down and proceed with sealer or filler. Use Eastwood Quality Flap Discs to properly blend the welds into the seam. No matter how small of an area, using this procedure when butt welding panels together can really make the difference in the final outcome of the repair.

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